just a little braver

To create is to change, and to that extent making art is a heroic act, an act of character. Every day with every word, chiseled from the wall of silence within, you rise up and stagger on, hoping to become just a little braver, wiser, more loving. You change. Before the demeaning  blankness of the page, perched on the edge of the inscrutable future, you are the hero.

– David Corbett

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“till death do us part.”

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Fly on the Wall.”

If you could be a “fly on the wall” anywhere and at any time in history, where and when would you choose?

My parents’s wedding.

It was a really simple ceremony back in 1986–done in a minister’s office. Minimal guests. Short preaching. An intimate dinner–immediate family only.

I would like to see their faces, their nervousness. I would like to see my Mom, 29 years younger, unknowing of what the future holds for her. And my Dad about to become a husband, promising to love the woman beside her, the one he fought hard for against those holding him back.

I would like to see the beginning of their journey, their marriage. I know there were small moments in this wedding–a small smile on my Mom’s face, a tear wanting to fall of my Dad’s eyes, a firmer more certain hold in their hands–that defined and reassured them that this was it. This was really it.

29 years later, I bet they’ll say “This is really it.” And they will laugh at each other. Their comfort so familiar and so easy.

And they keep on going.

u / yu / you / yuu

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Twenty-Five.”

There are 26 letters in the English language, and we need every single one of them. Want proof? Choose a letter and write a blog post without using it. (Feeling really brave? Make it a vowel!)

When I met you, you re-shaped my sentences and stories in such a specific way that I couldn’t write without your image hovering over the page telling my words where to go, where to hide, where to slip, and where to stick.

And my words follow you. My words needed you since you smiled and looked at me as we danced.

You’re like a shadow: inevitable during the day, faint and haunting at night.

You’re the invisible vowel that holds my story together, and I cannot write without you.

And all my stories are a rewriting of your name, a rewriting of the moment you came to my life, a revisiting of the many yesterdays you have made relevant, vivid as the present time as if you are still here.

to the room beside mine

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Study Abroad.”

If you were asked to spend a year living in a different location, where would you choose and why?

In my brother’s shoes.

I would like to know what he goes through, what goes through in his mind, even just for a day. He is as elusive as the 29th day of February, as quiet as the sunset. I would like to know how he feels, his dreams, his anxieties. My brother doesn’t say much, and I am a writer, so his nods, shrugs, footsteps kill my need for words. I read somewhere that writers thrive more in silence, in gaps, because those are spaces we can fill with words. But my brother refuses to use words. He prefers charcoal and blank paper, lines and shadows, portraits and still images. I would like to know his world because sometimes–sometimes around 2 in the morning–I think I hear him crying out for help. But when I check in the morning, I see new portraits of women looking at a distance, women with eyes so defined that they look at back at me and I am forced to blink making sure they aren’t alive.

My brother is an artist; and the heart of one, often inaccessible.

Words are all I have; and I’ve tried many many times to slip words under his door hoping to reach out to him in a medium I will understand.

But he simply replies back with nods, shrugs, footsteps, and charcoal portraits. His room is beside mine; we are separated by a wall, and I feel like he is in a different world where his hands are tainted with lead and the sky has copies of faces as stars.

And I would just like to know, to be reassured, that he is happy.

tempting, but.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Too Big To Fail.”

Tell us about something you would attempt if you were guaranteed not to fail (and tell us why you haven’t tried it yet).

But failing is a good thing. We fail everyday which means we have the chance of attaining bigger and more meaningful victories.

Every morning, I get up to write. Sentences are written and are stopped midway. They fail for now as I take care of life and everything it requires me to do. Then I go back to my failed sentences in the afternoon or at night before I sleep, and I look at them: stories that have failed to be stories fifteen hours ago.

But there is a new day tomorrow, and my pen still has ink, so I’ll try again: remembering where I failed and working harder to fail less.

The guarantee of success, of not failing, is tempting.

But every heartbreak makes the eventual happiness even more meaningful, even more lasting.